A natural gas receiving terminal has been postponed due to the potential impact on a coral reef.
The News Lens
By: Tim Ferry
Citing the need for further study of the rare coral reefs that lie nearby beneath the
waters off Taoyuan County, the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) on October 26 called for further postponement of a project to build Taiwan’s third liquefied natural gas (LNG) receiving terminal in Guantang, adjacent to the Datan natural-gas power plant on the Taoyuan coast. The NT$60 billion (US$2 billion) project to accommodate increased imports of LNG is considered vital to the government’s plans to transform the energy mix away from nuclear power and coal and towards cleaner natural gas and renewable energy.
Standing in the way of immediate implementation of the project are concerns that it would damage two endemic species of coral and two species of crustose coralline algae. In what scientists are calling an unprecedented discovery, the coral and algae have formed a collaborative reef, estimated to be 7,500 years old, which provides a habitat for a number of marine species, many of them valuable to Taiwan’s fisheries.